Genetic Testing in Leesburg

Deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA, carries the genetic code for all living things. Geneticists perform specialized DNA testing to detect changes or mutations in a person’s genes. Genetic tests may reveal essential information for a diagnosis, or could prevent or treatment a disease or illness.

It is important to understand that results from a genetic test can also be misleading. For instance, a young, healthy person who gets a positive result for a certain disease through a genetic test may never develop that condition or illness. Conversely, a negative genetic test result does not always rule out future conditions. This is why it is critical to talk to our trained medical professionals before receiving genetic testing in Leesburg. 

How is Genetic Testing Done?

Genetic testing starts with a DNA sample. Typically, a medical professional collects this sample by drawing blood or swabbing the check. While blood and saliva are the most common methods of taking a DNA sample, a geneticist may also use amniotic fluid, hair, semen, skin, stool, or tissues.

Then, the sample goes to a laboratory where a technician uses sophisticated techniques to assess whether there are any changes in the genetic material. The results can take days or longer, depending on the type of genetic testing done. It is important to have a conversation with our specialists in Centerville or Leesburg before deciding on genetic testing. 

Purposes of Genetic Testing in Leesburg

Patients in Leesburg or Centreville may receive genetic testing for many reasons, For example, a DNA test can prove or disprove paternity, siblinghood, and other family relations.

DNA testing is also widespread among new and expecting parents. Some parents may undergo preconception testing to determine if one or both parties carry genes for certain diseases that may get passed down to their children.

During pregnancy, prenatal testing can determine genetic disorders such as Down syndrome and trisomy 13 syndrome in an unborn child. This test takes place via amniocentesis. However, more recent techniques use DNA from the mother’s blood.

Newborn genetic screening is the most common type of testing in the United States because all states require all infants get tested. In Virginia, all newborns are screened for more than thirty conditions within 48 hours of birth unless the parents or guardians opt out for religious reasons.

Children, adolescents, and adults can use predictive testing to learn if they are at risk of certain diseases in their families. In addition, the results can help determine the proper course of treatment for diseases and conditions once patients receive a diagnosis. Pharmacogenomics is the study of how genes influence a patient’s response to medications. Pharmacogenetic testing assists doctors in selecting the appropriate medicines and doses for each patient.

Preimplantation testing is for people who want to conceive a child via in vitro fertilization (IVF). Once the embryos are screened for genetic abnormalities, the healthy embryos are selected for implantation in the uterus. IVF is a frequent option for couples who have trouble conceiving naturally. Genetic testing is a safe procedure. There is practically no physical risk whatsoever with blood and cheek swab tests. However, amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling are more invasive and can carry a small risk of miscarriage.

Speak with a Physician about Genetic Testing in Centreville and Leesburg

Genetic testing is not just for new and expecting parents. DNA testing has become increasingly popular as more people are looking to discover how they can better take care of their bodies and families based on their genetics. Whether you want to learn about your lineage or predict and prevent potential medical conditions, reach out to our team. If you are interested in genetic testing in Leesburg, speak with a member of our team today.